Compiled by Barry MacHale
Action Taken at January 15, 2019 Meeting
Shall the council:
1. Authorize the executive to sign a $456,939 contract (amendment #2) with Pioneer Human Services? At the 12/6/2016 meeting, vote #234, the council voted to enter into a contract with Pioneer Human Services of Seattle to operate City Gate, a permanent, supportive housing program for homeless ex-offenders exiting incarceration or experiencing mental illness. The contract was renewed for 2017 and extended for 2018. This amendment brings the total contract amount to $1,199,763, it expires on 12/31/2019. (AB2019-001) Approved 7-0
2. Approve the recommendations of the Economic Development Investment Board for a $250,000 grant/loan to the Port of Bellingham? The loan will be $166,667 and the grant $83,333. The funds will be used for new construction, refurbishment, replacement, rehabilitation, renovation or repair of the Walsh Marine Building project in Blaine. (AB2019-003) Approved 6-0, Todd Donovan abstained.
3. Authorize the executive to sign a $355,133 contract (amendment #5) with Michael Bobbink for the position of Whatcom County Hearing Examiner? The hearing examiner prepares written recommendations and decisions on land-use permits and administrative appeals. The contract expires on 12/31/2019. Michael Bobbink has been the Whatom County Hearing Examiner since 1996. Amended and approved 7-0 (AB2019-004) Approved 7-0
4. Authorize the executive to sign four contracts — totaling $494,992 — for staffing and operations of the Bellingham, Ferndale, Lynden, and Blaine Senior Activity Centers? The contracts are in the amount of $123,748 each and expire on 12/31/2020. The Bellingham contract is with the Council on Aging, the Lynden contact is with the city of Lynden, the Ferndale contract is with the Jet Oldsters Association and the Blaine contract is with the city of Blaine. (AB2019-007/014/015/016) Approved 7-0
5. Amend the Solid Waste Advisory Committee? The amendment addresses outdated language in the code and will allow the Whatcom County Council, the city of Bellingham, and the small cities to designate their own representative to the advisory committee without restricting the number of one-year terms. AB2019-046 (Ordinance 2019-007) Substitute amended and adopted 7-0
6. Fill two vacancies on the Incarceration Prevention and Reduction Task Force? The positions represent concerned citizens, with partial terms ending 1/31/2020 and 1/31/2022. Appointed: Heather Flaherty and Arlene Feld. Ms. Flaherty is currently employed as the operations director for Raptor Enterprises and the foundation director for the Riverstyx Foundation, and holds a M.A. in business administration and a B.S. in community health, both from Western Washington University. Ms. Feld is a licensed marriage and family therapist (AB2019-057)
7. Fill two vacancies on the Noxious Weed Control Board? The board facilitates public education and outreach addressing the environmental impact and management of noxious weeds. Appointed: Patricia Lenssen to District 5 and L. Alan Yoder to District 2. Ms. Lenssen is a landscape architect and Mr. Yoder, a farmer residing in Lynden, he has served on the board since 2000. (2019-060)
8. Fill a one vacancy on the Whatcom County Planning Commission? William Dominic Moceri was reappointed to the planning commission. He was initially appointed to a partial term at the 7/11/2017 meeting, vote #130. Mr. Moceri is the owner of Moceri Construction, Inc. and holds a B.A. in sustainable building from Fairhaven College. (AB2019-061)
9. Set January 29 to sell tax-title property by public auction? The property is located in the Paradise Lakes Country Club. The council has deemed a sale of the property tract to be in the best interest of the county. The property shall be sold to the highest and best bidder for no less than the minimum price of $1,543, which includes foreclosure cots, interest, penalties, and taxes. AB2019-030 (Resolution 2019-001) Approved 7-0
10. Amend the 2018 docket of proposed comprehensive plan and development regulation amendments? The amendment adds proposed changes related to conditions requiring applicants to connect to a public water system for drinking water. AB2019-002 (Resolution 2019-002) Approved 7-0
11. Amend Whatcom County Code as relates to flood damage prevention? (Public hearing held.) Whatcom County participates in the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s National Flood Insurance Program and must adopt a floodplain management ordinance that reflects updated flood insurance rate maps. AB2019-039 (Ordinance 2019-005) Adopted 7-0
12. Amend Whatcom County Code as relates to Whatcom County Shellfish Protection Districts? (Public hearing held.) The Whatcom County Council created shellfish protection districts for Drayton Harbor (1995), Portage Bay, (1998), and Birch Bay (2009) in response to pollution and related closures. Water quality in these areas continues to require improvement in order to maintain “approved” status. The districts sunsetted on 12/31/2018 and the ordinance will extend the sunset date until 12/31/2022. AB2019-042 (Ordinance 2019-006) Adopted 7-0
13. Amend the Solid Waste Advisory Committee? The County Council, city of Bellingham and small cities appoint one representative annually to serve on the committee. This amendment allows each jurisdiction can designate their representative without restricting the number of one-year terms and add one representative from agriculture. AB2019-046 (Ordinance 2019-007) Substitute amended and adopted 7-0
14. Amend Whatcom County Code related to boards and commissions? The amendment changes language in the code relating to term limits imposed on agency-designated members of various advisory boards and commissions. AB2019-067 (Ordinance 2019-008) Adopted 7-0
15. Amend Whatcom County Code as relates to the Incarceration Prevention and Reduction Task Force, and the Law and Justice Council? The ordinance amends code relating to the purpose, function, membership, and organization of the Task Force, and repeals county code designating the Law and Justice Council and transfers its functions to the Task Force. AB2019-041 (Ordinance 2019-009) Amended and adopted 7-0
Action Taken at January 29, 2019 Meeting
Shall the council:
16. Authorize the executive to sign a $160,000 contract with Marvin Wayne, M.D., P.S.? Whatcom County voters approved a countywide Emergency Medical Services levy at the November 2016 general election. The levy budget includes compensation for a medical program director. The contract expires on 12/31/2020. (AB2019-024) Approved 6-0, Barry Buchanan absent.
17. Authorize the executive to sign a $128,843 contract amendment (#1) with the Whatcom Humane Society? At the 12/6/2016 meeting, vote #244, council voted to enter into a two-year contract with the Whatcom Humane Society to provide animal control and shelter services, including housing, administering regulations, enforcement, and penalties pursuant to applicable laws. This amendment brings the total amended amount to $901,900, the contract contact expires on 4/30/2019. (AB2019-025) Approved 6-0, Barry Buchanan absent.
18. Amend the Business and Commerce Advisory Committee? At the 5/22/2018 meeting, vote #86, the council created the Business and Commerce Advisory Committee. The committee is composed of 15 members serving four year terms. This amendment would add one additional designated member to the committee, representing the health care industry. (AB2019-040) Failed 3-2, Tyler Byrd and Barbara Brenner1 opposed, Todd Donovan abstained, and Barry Buchanan absent.
19. Approve the Criminal Justice Treatment Account Plan? Upon approval of the plan, Whatcom County will receive $174,881 in state funding to be used for treatment, support, and recovery services for individuals experiencing chemical dependency while facing criminal charges. (AB2019-082) Approved 6-0, Barry Buchanan absent.
20. Authorize the executive to sign a $215,951 contract (amendment #21) with the Washington State University? The amendment will to continue the jointly shared costs for faculty positions and program support for WSU Whatcom County Extension. The amendment brings the total amended contract to $1,999,277, it expires on 12/31/2019. (AB2019-089) Approved 6-0, Barry Buchanan absent.
21. Fill a vacancy on the Portage Bay Shellfish Protection District? The Whatcom County Council created the Portage Bay Shellfish Protection District on 3/24/1998. Portage Bay continues to be impacted by reduced water quality in the Nooksack River. The county continues to monitor and mitigate the water quality issues, and will therefore be designated as a Marine Recovery Area. Alan Chapman was appointed to a District 3 position. Mr. Chapman is retired, for 30 years he was a fisheries manager with Lummi Natural Resources. (AB2019-092)
22. Sell tax-title property by public auction? The property is located in the Paradise Lakes Country Club. The council has deemed a sale of the property tract to be in the best interest of the county. The property shall be sold to the highest and best bidder for no less than the minimum price of $1,543, which includes foreclosure costs, interest, penalties, and taxes. AB2019-032 (Resolution 2019-003) Approved 7-0
23. Request the executive provide staff resources and funding to allow Cascadia Law Group to complete work related to legal ways the county may choose to limit the negative impacts on public safety, transportation, the economy, and environment from crude oil, coal, liquefied petroleum gases, and natural gas transhipments from the Cherry Point UGA? The Cascadia Law Group will produce a statutory analysis/study of legal mechanisms available to council as it develops regulations addressing public safety and environmental concerns related to the export of petroleum products from the Cherry Point Urban Growth Area; and technical assistance with the process of drafting Comprehensive Plan amendments. AB2019-113 (Resolution 2019-004) Approved 4-2, opposed Barbara Brenner2 and Tyler Byrd, Barry Buchanan absent.
24. Accept the Whatcom County Treasurer’s list of petitions for 2018 property tax refunds? The refunds total $766,543; they reflect senior exemptions ($653,069); taxes paid in error; changes in tax status; destroyed property ($21,608); personal property ($16,091); court orders; and miscellaneous exemptions ($42,729). The 2017 refunds totaled $823,486. AB2019-068 (Resolution 2019-005) Approved 6-0, Barry Buchanan absent.
25. Amend in the amount of $35,000 (request #1) the 2019 Flood Control Zone District and Subzones Budget? (Council acting as the flood control district board of supervisors) The funding will continue efforts to develop a Lake Whatcom Stormwater taxing district. AB2019-034 (Resolution 2019-006) Approved 5-1, Tyler Byrd opposed and Barry Buchanan absent.
26. Cancel uncollectible personal property taxes totaling $13,179? State law requires that the county treasurer present to the council a list of taxes certified as uncollectible. Seventeen businesses totaling $12,369 and three individual mobile homes totaling $810 are listed. AB2019-049 (Resolution 2019-007) Approved 6-0, Barry Buchanan absent.
27. Appoint one Councilmember to serve as an optional alternate member of the Washington State Association of Counties Board of Directors? AB2019-108 (Resolution 2019-008) Approved 6-0, Barry Buchanan absent.
28. Impose an interim moratorium on the acceptance and processing of applications and permits for new or expanded facilities in the Cherry Point UGA, the primary purpose of which would be the shipment of unrefined fossil fuels not to be processed at Cherry Point? (Public hearing held) This vote extends the moratorium for six months, with options for renewal if the appropriate public hearings are held. The moratorium covers facilities including, but not limited to, piers, wharfs, buildings, tank farms, pipelines, rail loading and offloading facilities, road spurs, or other infrastructure purposed for exporting unrefined fossil fuels, including stabilized or unstabilized crude oil, diluted or raw bitumen, sycrude, coal, methane, propane, butane, and liquid or gaseous natural gas, the primary purpose of which would be the shipment of unrefined fossil fuels not to be processed at Cherry Point. The council initiated the original moratorium at the 8/9/2016 meeting, vote #147, extending it for six months at the 9/27/2016 meeting, votes #173, 3/21/2017 meeting, vote #54, 9/26/2017 meeting, vote #180, 2/27/2018 meeting, vote #34 and the 8/8/2018 meeting, vote #127 respectively. This ordinance retains options for renewal upon expiration if the appropriate public hearings are held. AB2019-064 (Ordinance 2019-010) Adopted 5-2, Barbara Brenner3 and Tyler Byrd opposed.
29. Amend the 2019 budget (request #1), in the amount of $778,500? Appropriated: $25,000 to fund the last phase of the countywide agenda management system implementation, including: final payment; data migration; a sandbox site; audio-visual system integration; and follow up support; $35,000 to fund consulting services to develop a funding mechanism for a Lake Whatcom Management Program, including a rate study; $205,000 to fund audio-visual upgrades in five courtrooms and video conferencing capabilities; $263,500 to fund economic development in the county, including: a countywide rural broadband study, master planning for a Cherry Point District, and master planning for residential and industrial infrastructure in the Interstate 5 corridor; and $250,000 to fund the Port of Bellingham Walsh Marine building expansion project in Blaine. AB2019-033 (Ordinance 2019-011) Adopted 5-1, Tyler Byrd opposed, Barry Buchanan absent.
30. Amend the Bellingham-Whatcom County Commission Against Domestic Violence? The title is changed to Commission on Domestic & Sexual Violence. The amendment will expand the scope of the commission to ending sexual violence and utilize an agreement with the city of Bellingham for ongoing operations of the commission. AB2019-036 (Ordinance 2019-012) Adopted 6-0, Barry Buchanan absent.
Action Taken at February 5, 2019 Meetings
Shall the council:
31. Support Washington State Legislature funding for core public health service? (Council acting as the Board of Health.) AB2019-110 (Resolution 2019-009) Approve 6-1, Tyler Byrd opposed.
32. A joint resolution of the San Juan County Council, the board of Skagit County Commissioners and the Whatcom County Council to fill a vacancy — created by the resignation of Kevin Ranker — in the position of state senator for the 40th legislative district? Anacortes City Council member Liz Lovelett was supported by the three members of the San Juan County Council and two of the three Skagit County commissioners, enough to win the seat. AB2019-130 (Resolution 2019-010) Only Tyler Byrd voted for Liz Lovelett; Rud Brown and Barbara Brenner 4 abstained.
Action Taken at February 12, 2019 Meeting
Shall the council:
33. Temporarily re-open Cottonwood Drive at Morgan Drive to vehicular traffic? (Public hearing held.) In 2001, Whatcom County closed Cottonwood Drive at Morgan Drive to vehicular traffic. Recent storms caused severe erosion on Birch Bay Drive and road repairs are affecting access for residents living on Cottonwood Drive and Cottonwood Court. When repairs to Birch Bay Drive are completed, Cottonwood Drive at Morgan Drive will be closed to vehicular traffic. (AB2019-076) Failed 3-3, Barbara Brenner, 5 Todd Donovan and Carol Frazey opposed, Tyler Byrd absent.
34. Authorize the executive to sign a $100,000 contract with the Birch Bay Chamber of Commerce? The contract will fund operations of the Birch Bay Visitor Center, including the marketing of multi-day events designed to promote tourism and overnight stays. The contract expires on 12/31/2019. (2019-026) Approved 6-0, Tyler Byrd absent.
35. Authorize the executive to sign a $120,000 funding agreement with the Lummi Nation? The agreement will provide funds to the Lummi Nation to use for natural resource monitoring and impact mitigation related to treaty-protected natural resources during the Birch Bay Drive and Pedestrian Facility project. The project is developing a berm/trail to minimize beach erosion and storm damage, and to promote bicycling and walking. The total cost of the project is estimated at $11,450,000.
(AB2019-111) Approved 6-0, Tyler Byrd absent.
36. Authorize the executive to sign a $966,275 contract (amendment #1) with Herrera Environmental Consultants of Seattle? At the 7/24/2018 meeting, vote #120, council voted to establish the Swift Creek Sediment Management Fund and authorized $1 million for the first and second tasks. The creek contains naturally occurring asbestos that continually comes off Sumas Mountain. During flooding, Swift Creek can transport asbestos-laden sediment down the creek and into the Sumas River posing
health risks. The sediment can be deposited on channel banks and floodplains within Whatcom County and conveyed into Canada. The contract will continue analysis support for the Swift Creek Sediment Management Action Plan Implementation, including design, improvements, and site development. This amendment brings the amended contract to $1,005,995 and it expires on 12/31/2020. The state has allocated $4 million for the project. (AB2019-112) Approved 6-0, Tyler Byrd absent.
37. Authorize the executive to sign a $250,000 Economic Development Investment Board loan/grant agreement with the Port of Bellingham? The loan will be $166,667 and the grant $83,333 for a total of $250,000. The funds will be used for new construction, refurbishment, replacement, rehabilitation, and renovation or repair of the Marine Building project in Blaine. The estimated expiration date is 12/31/2019. (AB2019-087) Approved 5-0-1, Todd Donovan abstained, Tyler Byrd absent.
38. Authorize the executive to sign an $123,000 agreement between the Whatcom County Flood Control Zone District and the city of Bellingham? (Council acting as the flood control district board of supervisors.) The agreement will provide for management and operation of the joint city-county aquatic invasive species boat inspection program. The city of Bellingham will manage the watercraft inspection program for Lake Whatcom and Lake Samish. (AB2019-105) Approved 6-0, Tyler Byrd absent.
39. Authorize the executive to sign a $453,100 cooperative agreement with the federal government for repair of flood-damaged levees on the Nooksack River? (Council acting as the flood control district board of supervisors.) The agreement with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers will support repair of 300 feet of flood-damaged levees on the Nooksack River at Hannegan Road near Lynden. The federal government will fund $362,480 and $90,620 is a local responsibility. (AB2019-107) Approved 6-0, Tyler Byrd absent.
40. Authorize the executive to award the low bid of $90,000 to Exact Scientific Services of Ferndale for water quality analytical testing services? Whatcom County collects water at approximately 133 sites in the county. Exact Scientific Services will provide laboratory analysis of surface water samples for fecal coliform, e. coli, and other bacterial analysis. The contract expires on 12/31/2019. (AB2019-115) Approved 6-0, Tyler Byrd absent.
41. Authorize the executive to sign a $50,000 contract with the Whatcom Conservation District for the community wildlife risk reduction program? The primary customers for this service are communities identified as high- and extreme-risk to wildfire as identified in the National Fire Protection Association 2006 Wildfire Risk Assessment. The expiration date is 12/31/2010. (AB2019-119). Approved 6-0, Tyler Byrd absent.
42. Request that the executive provide staff resources and funding to coordinate with Whatcom County cities, social services agencies, and other homeless service providers to increase shelter capacity? Unsheltered individuals are at night time risk during periods of very cold weather and need coordination services to access safe overnight shelter options, including access to hotel/motel accommodation vouchers and temporary public spaces. AB2019-138 (Resolution 2019-011) Amended and approved 6-0, Tyler Byrd absent.
43. Adopt various Whatcom County Code amendments related to zoning, land division regulations, and land use and development procedures? (Public hearing held.) Each year, Planning & Development Services proposes amendments to clarify code and address inconsistencies and grammatical errors. No major policy changes are proposed. AB2019-018 (Ordinance 2019-013) Adopted 6-0, Tyler Byrd absent.
44. Install stop signs on various county roads? (Public hearing held.) Recent storms caused severe erosion on Birch Bay Drive and road repairs require that seven temporary stop signs be installed at Harboview Road, Shintaffer Road, Cottonwood Drive, and Birch Bay Drive. The signs will be removed upon completion of road repairs. AB2019-073 (Ordinance 2019-014) Adopted 6-0, Tyler Byrd absent.
45. Establish a temporary speed limit for Birch Bay Drive? (Public hearing held.) Recent storms caused severe erosion on Birch Bay Drive and road repairs require the temporary establishment of a one-way traffic pattern and reduced speed limit between Harborview and Shintaffer Roads. The standard traffic pattern and speed limit will resume upon completion of repairs. AB2019-074) (Ordinance 2019-015) Adopted 6-0, Tyler Byrd absent.
46. Establish temporary one-way traffic on Birch Bay Drive? (Public hearing held.) Establish temporary one-way traffic on Birch Bay Drive northwest-bound from the intersection of Harborview Road to the intersection of Shintaffer Road due to the special hazard of erosion to the southbound lane of Birch Bay Drive. AB2019-075 (Ordinance 2019-016) Adopted 6-0, Tyler Byrd absent.
Action Taken at February 26, 2019 Meeting
Shall the council:
47. Fill a vacancy in the District 2 position on the Whatcom County Planning Commission? The Planning Commission assists the Planning and Development Services Department in relating to the preparation and execution of the Comprehensive Plan. Applicants: Robert Bartel, Ria Bordian, Bob Burr, James Hansen and Towhee Wean. Robert Bartel was appointed to fill the vacancy. Mr. Bartel holds an A.A.S. Electrician degree from Bellingham Technical College and is currently employed as the training director for the Northwest Washington Electrical J.A.T.C. in Mt. Vernon. (AB2019-127)
48. Authorize the executive to accept a $552,549 state grant for the Agate Bay stormwater improvement project? The county will design and construct stormwater retrofits in order to improve water quality in the Lake Whatcom watershed. The Agate Bay Phase II Stormwater Improvement project treats runoff to reduce phosphorous loading. Whatcom County will contribute a 25 percent match of $184,183 for a total of $736,731. (AB2019-135) Approved 7-0
49. Confirm the executive’s appointment of Patrick Alesse to the Whatcom County Bicycle-Pedestrian Advisory Committee? Mr. Alesse lives in Birch Bay, he is retired from the Blaine School District. (AB2019-144) Confirmed 7-0
50. Support various Washington State House and Senate bills? Preventing pollution (HB 1194); increasing the food supply for orcas by preserving fish habitats (HB 1579); protecting southern resident orca whales from vessels (HB 1580 and SB 5577); and improving the safety of oil transportation. (HB 1578 and SB 5578). AB2019-133 (Resolution 2019-012) Approved 4-1-2, Barbara Brenner6 opposed, Todd Donovan and Tyler Byrd abstained.
51. Request that the Whatcom County Prosecutor ask the Washington State Attorney General to review and update opinions previously provided related to the eligibility of county council members and commissioners to be appointed to vacant legislative positions? AB2019-137 (Resolution 2019-013) Approved 6-1, Barbara Brenner opposed.7
52. Amend the Whatcom County Code related to animal control, administration, and enforcement? (Public hearing held.) Language will be added to the code to: more clearly identify entities that may be authorized and obligated to engage in administration and enforcement activities; update definitions to include “humane societies” and other animal care and control agencies; and to define “animal control officer” in the code. AB2019-027 (Ordinance 2019-017) Adopted 7-0
53. Modify the Whatcom County Code related to aquatic invasive species? (Public hearing held.) Changes to code include: a definition for a third classification of watercraft, “Class B watercraft;” it means any watercraft that has a motorized propulsion system and state registration is not required.; the establishment a one-day user pass; and updates to definitions. AB2019-103 (Ordinance 2019-018) Adopted 7-0
54. Amend the unified fee schedule to accommodate changes to Whatcom County code related to aquatic invasive species? (Public hearing held.) Fees for aquatic invasive species inspections for newly introduced classes of watercraft were not included in the current unified fee schedule, adopted at the 12/4/2018 meeting, vote #228. AB2019-106 (Ordinance 2019-019) Adopted 7-0
55. Amend Whatcom County Code to correct specific precinct boundary lines and precinct maps? (Public hearing held.) State law requires the county legislative authority of each county to divide the county into election precincts and establish the boundaries of the precincts. Certain precinct boundary line adjustments are needed due to annexations in the city of Bellingham and the city of Lynden. New boundaries are designated for precincts 135, 139, 157, 159, 160, 273, 506, 272, 271, and 270. AB2019-121 (Ordinance 2019-020) Adopted 7-0
56. Amend the 2019 budget (request #2), in the amount of $4,901,742? Appropriate: $132,751 to relocate the law library from the Prosecuting Attorney office to a more appropriate department since the Prosecuting Attorney is no longer on the law library board of trustees; $188,519 to fund the fiscal years 2016-2017 Operation Stonegarden border security program at the sheriff’s office; $13,223 to fund inclement weather gear at the sheriff’s office; and $4,700,000 to fund the Courthouse building
envelope project. AB2019-124 (Ordinance 2019-021) Adopted 6-0-1, Barbara Brenner abstained.8
57. Appropriate an additional $4,700,000 (amendment #3) to the Courthouse building envelope project budget? At the 5/6/2014 meeting, vote #93, council authorized a $507,857 contract with HKP Architects of Mount Vernon to conduct a survey of the courthouse exterior. At the 11/25/2014 meeting, vote #226, council established a project fund and project-based budget. At the 3/21/2017 meeting, vote #55, and 5/16/2017 meeting, vote #98, the council voted to add funding to the project budget. Currently, HKP Architects has completed an exterior survey, introduced design options, and developed a maintenance schedule for their chosen option. This amendment expands the scope of the initial construction phase to include brick repair and sealing, in addition to roof replacement. This amendment brings the total amend project budget to $7,377,809. AB2019-128 (Ordinance 2019-022) Adopted 6-0-1, Barbara Brenner abstained.9
1. From Barbara Brenner: I opposed adding one member to the Business and Commerce Advisory Committee because I believe there should be an odd number of voting members to prevent tie votes (as is the case in other committees/boards). I suggested another type of business/industry to be included but it was not approved. I hope the vote will come up again with two additional proposed members to keep it as an odd number.
2. From Barbara Brenner: I opposed funding the Cascadia Law Group because I believe the law firm chosen is not objective, although I do personally like the attorney assigned to this work. I believe the council is setting up a scenario that will create huge costs for the public and the refineries and will likely not produce environmental or workable results.
3. From Barbara Brenner: I opposed the Cherry Point interim moratorium on exporting unrefined fossil fuels because it was supposed to only be for unrefined fossil fuel, which I support, but it also included materials that are not unrefined such as propane, butane, and natural gas (an extremely clean fuel). I would like to see more refining done in the United States instead of shipping any unrefined fossil fuel off North America, especially shipments to Asia, including China. For many years I have researched wild salmon. During my research I found wild salmon are being very negatively impacted by processing/refining in Asia (having few regulations), which has caused lots of acidity and other pollution to come our way by the prevailing winds and currents. Although people here don’t see that pollution, it is still a huge problem! Our regulations are much stronger, our refineries are much better, and treatment of their employees is very good. If it isn’t refined here it will be refined somewhere else, especially Asia, and would likely increase the pollution we receive.
4. From Barbara Brenner: I abstained from voting for the senate position because I wanted to vote for a different person than the only one who was verbally nominated at the meeting (when we received the original information it had three nominations but when the vote took place only one person was nominated). I felt all three were excellent candidates and didn’t want to vote, “no” for any of them but felt the process was unfair in that they were not all simply nominated and let us all just vote for the one we most wanted.
5. From Barbara Brenner: I opposed re-opening Cottonwood Drive at Morgan Drive to vehicular traffic because the county had already declared that route to be dangerous so it seemed the county would be opening itself up to liability by re-opening Cottonwood Drive.
6. From Barbara Brenner: I opposed two of the six bills because no one on the council, including those who proposed it, could answer any questions I had. Also, I don’t understand how adding more vessels (in the way of tugs) will reduce pollution. Someone claimed it would reduce noise but I thought when ships move slower, like when they are near orcas, it reduces noise anyway. I believe the biggest threat to orcas is a lack of food (salmon) and I have suggested ways to restore salmon. I also supported having an expert come to the council to answer my questions but it was voted down. It really bothers me to read bill titles that claim so much and do so little, if anything. I even made a motion to remove some language so I could support the rest and that was voted down. The devil is always in the details but too many politicians get away with making “motherhood and apple pie” bill titles in order to further a political motive rather than an environmental one.
7. From Barbara Brenner: I opposed the request to ask the Washington State Attorney General because there is already an attorney general’s opinion that sitting council members/commissioners aren’t eligible UNLESS they resign their position to be considered since they are part of those who decide who is appointed. Even if they abstain it would definitely appear they have undue influence on the others from their legislative body. Further, this was brought forward by a council member who was not considered because he wouldn’t resign his seat to be considered.
8. From Barbara Brenner: I abstained from the courthouse building envelope project because most of the was done some years ago and scheduled to be redone because the original job was terrible and I am concerned this project is a big, black hole that won’t fix the problems. I abstained instead of voting “no” because I trust our public works staff involved. I just don’t trust the project can fix all the problems within the existing budget. 9. From Barbara Brenner: I abstained for the same reasons as I indicated in footonote #8.